Join The Friends

Photograph by Joe Smereczansky


Members of the Friends pay an annual subscription which allows them free entry into the Reserve for the subscription period 1 April to 31 March of the following year.

As a member of the Friends you will be showing your support for nature conservation in The Helderberg.

The subscriptions received are used primarily to:

  • Contribute to conservation activities that protect the flora and fauna of the Helderberg Nature Reserve
  • Provide information services that will contribute to visitor experiences and understanding of the reserve
  • Provide practical assistance to the City of Cape Town in the upkeep of the reserve.
As a friend, you will receive the following:

  • Membership card which provides you free entrance to the reserve throughout the period your card is valid
  • Regular newsletters and information bulletins.
  • Option to buy an Early Riser Key for early morning access to the reserve
  • Access to walks and talks


1 April 2020 to 31 March 2021


Membership Category Subscription Conditions
Ordinary Member (19-59 yrs) R140 One numbered card in the name of the Member. Non-transferable.
Senior Citizen (60+ yrs) R80 One numbered card in the name of the Member. Non-transferable.
Family R260

One numbered card in each family member’s name comprising two adults and children 4-18 years. Non transferable.

Note: Children under 4 years – entry to the reserve is included on the responsible card holder’s membership.

Please note: ID numbers for all applicants are required and the dates of birth for children 4-18 years must be provided.  If renewing, please bring the membership cards of all persons listed on the form with you.

Please download the application form and complete before bringing it to the visitors centre for processing.

early riser key

1 May 2019 to 30 April 2020 – Sold Out

To walk in the Reserve from 05:00 in the morning before the gate is opened, become a Friend and buy an Early Riser Key at the Visitor Centre.  Only available to paid-up members who produce all the relevant membership cards.  There are strict conditions associated with this privilege.

Cost: R 200 p/a

Please download the early riser key form, type in details online and print, bring to the visitors centre with all relevant membership cards and I.D. numbers for processing.  Read our terms and conditions carefully on the application form and note we only accept cash or credit card payments. 

For more information, contact the Visitor Centre 021 851 4060.

General info and T&C’s


 Obtaining membership

  • Download form from our website, type in details and print, pay via EFT, print copy of proof of payment (no emails), hand in both forms at the Visitor Centre in the reserve.  Bank details are provided on the downloadable forms.
  • OR Membership application forms, in English or Afrikaans, are available at the Visitor Centre in the reserve.  Complete the form, hand in the completed form and pay the required membership fee either by cash or credit card.  
  • Note: ID numbers are required for all adults plus dates of birth for children 4-18 years.

What members receive

  • Each member renewing will receive a coloured sticker with the new ‘Valid until’ date printed on it to paste on his/her membership card.
  • New members: Everyone will be issued with a membership card in his/her name, each with its unique number.
  • Lost cards are R10


  • All members are required to show their membership cards to the gate official on entry and carry them on their person while in the reserve as a means of identification.
    For more information, contact the Visitor Centre 021 851 4060.

Membership Rules

  • Members should at all times observe and comply with the general rules of admission to the Helderberg Nature Reserve as required by reserve management.
  • Members are required to comply with the regulation opening hours of the reserve, unless special permission has been obtained from the reserve manager to be in the reserve at any other time.
  • Members shall present their valid Friends membership cards at the gate on arrival.
  • Members are responsible for ensuring that their membership is up to date and that their card is valid whenever it is used.
  • Members should carry their valid membership card and a form of identification on their person at all times when in the reserve.
  • Membership cards are not interchangeable and may only be used by the person whose name appears on the card.
  • Whilst inside the reserve you are obliged to show your membership card on request from any official of the reserve management.
  • Reserve management has the right to confiscate a member’s card if a violation of the rules has been determined.
  • Members agree to support the Vision and Mission Statement of the Helderberg Friends group and to be bound by the terms of its constitution.
Early riser

Obtaining a key

  • Members wishing to obtain an early riser key should call at the Visitor Centre, open daily from 10:00 to 16:00, complete and sign an application form agreeing to the terms and conditions and pay the required fee – cash or credit card only, no EFT.
  • Early Riser Key application forms may also be downloaded here for printing and completion:
    2018-19 Early Riser Key Form
  • All applicants should bring their Friends membership cards and ID/Passport numbers with them, together with those of their nominated family members and/or walking associate. No key will be issued without this information.
  • Application for keys may be made from 28 April 2018 onwards, not before.


  • Each key is marked with a unique serial number and serial numbers are recorded on the key holder register against the name of the person purchasing the key, along with his/her membership and ID or Passport numbers.
  • Entry to the reserve is via the pedestrian gate.
  • Access is allowed daily from 05:00.
  • Under no circumstances may the key be used after the official closing time in the evening, either to enter or to exit the reserve.
  • The current lock on the gate will be replaced on 1 May 2018 and the new keys issued will be valid until 30 April 2019.
  • Keys are not allowed to be given to anyone other than a family member who should be on the key register. Any key holder or member allowing access to persons, other than those listed on the key register, will be penalised.
  • Applicants may nominate the following to accompany them, provided each is a paid-up member of the Friends and his/her name, membership and ID/Passport numbers are listed on the application form:
    • his/her spouse/partner
    • children aged 4–18 years, who are part of his/her Friends family membership unit
    • a walking associate (one only).
  • The list of registered key holders and their family members and/or walking associate is updated regularly and forwarded to reserve management for security purposes.
  • The fee of R200 covers the cost of the key as well as the administrative costs incurred by the Friends. Payment can be by cash or credit card.
  • If the key is lost, key holders are asked to report this immediately. Replacement keys will be issued at the normal fee.
  • Key usage expires on 30 April 2019, after which key holders are requested to return their keys.